Leading up to this third instalment of the Froth and Fury Festival, I was certainly getting excited about the day leading up to it. Due to all kinds of circumstances, it hadn’t been since the last touring Soundwave Festival that I had attended a full day festival purely dedicated to music of the heavy variety. Looking at the schedule for the day it was apparent to me that I was going to be very busy getting myself around to all three stages to check out the line-up of local, interstate, and international bands on offer.
Not only was I excited about the line-up, I was also pretty happy with the venue. It’s hard not to love the idea of bringing together the fury of metal music with the frothy goodness of a cold beer, especially at Pirate Life Brewery in Port Adelaide, one of my personal favourites!
Having been to Pirate Life on quite a few occasions, I was very interested to see how they would have it set up for such a big event. I knew there was a big outdoor area for socialising already but was sure this wouldn’t quite be enough for this event.
Entering the venue in the late morning after opening time, I could see that the usual set up of the brewery was still operational for the general public, with an additional entrance behind for ticket holders to access the live music stages. Not only was the usual Pirate Life bar and shop open (including the regular barbershop parlour), but there was also the addition of a tattoo studio inside for the day’s event!
Once inside the Froth and Fury entrance, it became clear how they would fit everyone in for the day. Not only was there the main brewery area to accommodate, it seemed that all of the adjoining streets were closed off and being utilised to good advantage. Directly behind the main brewery building was the main stage (the Froth Stage). Looking straight ahead down the street I could see the stage that would accommodate the majority of the local bands (the Explosive Stage). Right in the middle, down a side street running parallel with the main stage was the third stage, the Fury Stage! These three stages were all far away enough from each other to allow all three to be running simultaneously without the sound overlapping, yet they were all close enough to make it easy to access all three without long walks between them.
Throughout this set up, there were long, shaded tables for eating, drinking, and socialising, a large merch shed, eateries, and plenty of accessible toilets. It seemed apparent right from the start that this event was very well set up and that I was going to be reviewing the day more as an experience than picking apart the individual performances of the bands in detail.
Not long after arriving, more than one person had described this set up as being like the schützenfest of metal!
As soon as I had surveyed the scene of the event, I attempted to plan my day, using my printed timetable which I used constantly throughout the day to remind myself of where I wanted to be and which band I needed to see. This planning exercise, however, proved to be difficult at times, thanks to the beautiful nature of the metal community. I found that I couldn’t walk more than a few steps without running into somebody I knew who wanted to stop for a chat. I personally love that about this community, it is seriously like one big family and it made this event even more special.
First up for me, was the Froth stage to catch my first Adelaide band for the day, Emergency Rule. Their set was suitably rocking and as they certainly weren’t the heaviest band on the line-up, it seemed like a great way to ease into things. Despite a couple of technical sound issues which were quickly rectified, they had the growing crowd interested and were a great warm up for a long day ahead. From here I headed to the Fury stage for the first time. Here I caught my next local band Descend to Acheron and their much heavier death metal set. For much of the day, it appeared that this stage was the place to be for the heaviest of metal. Although it was barely past morning, it was obvious that the punters were keen for a whole day of hardcore music as the ever-growing crowd were lapping up this wall of sound right from the start. From here, it was back to the Froth stage for me to catch my first international band for the day. New Zealand’s Devilskin hit the stage with a lot of energy and had the crowd worked up in no time at all. Jennie Skulander’s vocals were fantastic as they went from powerful and clean to a growl and back again with ease while guitarist Tony ‘Nail’ Vincent stalked the stage and interacted well with the crowd. As soon as this set was over, it was time for me to rush off to the Explosive Stage for another Adelaide band Chainsaw Preachers. I spoke to members of the band not long before their set and they wondered if their set was not heavy enough for this event. They certainly had nothing to worry about. Their brand of punk n’ roll was well suited to the occasion. There were definitely heavier bands on the line-up but the variety of heavy music that was featured throughout the day was what made it great. There were certainly enough people at this stage enjoying the performance and this did seem to be the stage to feature more of a punk sound that any other throughout the day.
I did somehow manage during this time to grab some lunch and some merch without missing out on too much live music. Thanks to the aforementioned great set up of the show, it was easy enough to get in and out without having to suffer the long queues usually found at music festivals. Worth mentioning also (and huge praise to the organisers) there appeared to be great access to everything that was available on the day for the punters with mobility issues. Accessibility and inclusivity sure looked to be covered.
From here I really had to get organised to catch all the bands I wanted to as there were a few sets overlapping. The rest of my day seemed to be all about sampling all of the great bands in smaller doses than I usually would. Despite wanted to see the entire sets from all of the bands, I actually really enjoy this aspect of festivals in some ways. It certainly makes a twelve-hour day fly by, and I sure don’t get bored for a second! Within this next hour I managed to get to all three stages, seeing more local punk n’ roll from Cull-The Band, local thrash metal from Hidden Intent and some emo-metalcore from Melbourne’s Windwaker. It was fantastic being able to see such different sub-genres of metal so close to each other. Hidden Intent, having not long returned from playing the huge metal Wacken Open-Air Festival in Germany, had the crowd fired up, getting into circle pits and enthusiastically flashing their metal horns to the stage, while Windwaker had their crowd bouncing up and down in a less raucous manner.
Among the next few bands I caught were Sydney’s Red Hook, Melbourne’s Mannequin Death Squad and Germany’s Beyond the Black…all three female-fronted bands with powerful vocals clearly demonstrating that heavy music is not as male-dominated as it once was. All three bands put on an entertaining high-energy show with memorable songs that will stick with you for days. I was especially impressed with how big Mannequin Death Squad’s sound was despite being a two-piece act. It sure sounded bigger than one guitar and drums!
New Zealand’s Alien Weaponry were up shortly after and were one of the highlights of the day. Their thrash metal with lyrics in the native indigenous language, te reo Māori seems to really set them apart from many other bands on the scene. They had the huge crowd enthralled for the duration of their set.
Following them on this stage was the Gold Coast’s Sunk Loto, performing their album Between Birth and Death in its entirety for its 20th anniversary. They were yet another band today performing a high-energy set and they had the crowd singing along to the majority of it. Everything Everywhere was one song in particular that had everybody in full voice.
Since this event was held at Pirate Life Brewery, it only seemed fitting to have two pirate themed bands on the line up. On the Explosive Stage was Adelaide’s Captain Hellfire and the Wretched Brethren while on the Fury stage was Queensland’s Lagerstein. Both bands brought the party atmosphere to their sets and added some light-hearted entertainment to a fairly serious day of metal. Not long after the sun had set, it was time for California’s Suicidal Tendencies to hit the stage. This was one of the bands that I was really looking forward to seeing. They certainly did not disappoint! Right from the start, they were manic on stage! Front-man Mike Muir may be in his 60s now, but he still moves non-stop like he always has, like an angry teenager. The entire band, including Metallica’s (and ex-ST bassist) Robert Trujillo’s teenage son Ty on bass, all spent a lot of the set running the length of the stage, jumping on and off amp cabinets, rarely slowing down to take a breath. When they closed the set with their hit song Institutionalised, Mike Muir jumped into the packed crowd and sang the entire thing as he worked his way throughout the enthusiastic punters before the set was over.
Closing out the show was Brisbane’s The Butterfly Effect on the Froth Stage while Sweden’s The Halo Effect took care of the heavier end of things on the Fury Stage.
I started with the lighter side of things with The Butterfly Effect before I moved over to check out The Halo Effect. My plan was to return to The Butterfly Effect for the remainder of the night but although the band sounded tight and had the crowd singing along and enjoying the show, after Suicidal Tendencies, I needed my night to finish off with something heavier so returned to the Fury Stage to end my night with the melodic death metal on offer. The Halo Effect, despite having a very heavy sound with Mikael Stanne’s vocals being typically angry sounding, the band seemed to be having fun and had the crowd at this stage also in good spirits. It seemed to sum up the day really. Heavy but happy and great fun!
To sum up such a huge outdoor gig…the team from Disruptive Productions who have presented Froth and Fury, describe themselves as ‘three crazy music fans who never really grew up who want to being music to Adelaide. To give young Adelaide bands a chance to play alongside big acts to show promotors that Adelaide is worth the effort!’
This is clearly an event made by people with a massive passion for heavy music who have done a phenomenal job! I get the impression that this event will continue to grow and could truly become a destination gig for heavy music fans all over the world! Regardless of which bands may be on the line-up for future Froth and Fury Festivals, if you love heavy music, I highly recommend attending just for the great experience and for the love of metal!
Review By Suzanne Blacketer
From a venue upgrade to a sold out show I was not surprised to see hundreds of people lined up when I arrived at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre. I’m not the biggest fan of a huge snaking lineup but when it’s for a gig of one of your favourite band’s you suck it up and jump on the end! Starting the week with a Monday night gig featuring Beartooth is about as awesome a start as you can get. Add Pierce The Veil and Dayseeker and you are in for a belter of a night.
Starting off the evening Orange County lads Dayseeker enter the stage to a roar from the crowd as punters continued to fill what little space remained in the venue. Opening with Dreamstate, which is also the opening track off their new album Dark Sun sees heartfelt lyrics delivered amongst melodic guitar riffs and crushing drums. Encouraging us to have a good fucking time the band lead into Crooked Soul as the screams of the female fans go up an octave. Songs off the new album are peppered in amongst older crowd favourites like Sleeptalk. Rory laughs telling us that even though they are known as a sad song band their song Homesick is about being happy. Taking a moment to reflect Rory spoke about his father, about how he has always written songs about him and his dad’s battle with Parkinson’s disease and cancer, which sadly took his life in 2021. He dedicated Beyond Grave to his dad to which the crowd applauded. Dayseeker had the audience captivated from the first note with Rory Rodriguez’s powerful and emotive vocals taking us on a journey full of highs and lows. An awesome set from the opening act, setting the tone for the rest of the night.
Four years ago, this week I was in Brisbane seeing the very same band that was next on the bill. Beartooth holds a special place in my heart, as many of their fans will attest, their lyrics hit hard but also provide comfort and direction when things become overwhelming. As the first notes of Devastation echoed around the AEC the vibration in the air changed. A shirtless Caleb Shomo pranced and whirled around the stage, as he radiated an energy so high it pulsated out through the crowd elevating and electrifying us. For the next hour Beartooth took no prisoners. Hammering us relentlessly with all our favourites – Disease, The Line, Hated, Body Bag and newer single Sunshine. Caleb reflects on how his life has changed over the last four years, mentioning that anyone familiar with the band will know that the subject matter over four EPs has not been the most positive, leading us into the bands newest single that is only days old – Might Love Myself. He talks about how he has been alcohol free for nineteen months and the positive effects it has had on his life. He also shares with us that even when everything is going well anxiety can still occasionally rear its ugly head, telling us that not long before coming onto the stage he suffered from a panic attack. Connecting with the audience is something that Beartooth do extremely well. Everything about this set was just so damn wholesome and my heart is full.
Seven years’ worth of ear-splitting screams heralded Pierce the Veil’s arrival on stage. The band has obviously been missed by the Adelaide contingent of fans and I think that the band may have just missed us. Exploding into Death of an Executioner my eyes continually darted from one side of the stage to another as three bodies used every spare space they could find. Relief came between songs as the stage darkened while we prepared for the next onslaught. Touring Australia to celebrate the release of their latest album The Jaws of Life, PTV have brought the party spirit with them. Bulls In The Bronx and Pass The Nirvana revved the crowd up no end, helped along be confetti, streams of smoke and a crazy good light show. Vocalist Vic thanked the crowd for selling out the show, telling us it had been way too long, and they had missed us. Vic thanked us for being there, apparently, we were supposed to ease our way into the gig, but we just turned it all the way up. Yes Adelaide! After a quick check to make sure that we had brought along our Emergency Contact we were back into moving our bodies. One lucky young lady named Charli was invited onto the stage for a sing and dance and was gifted Vic’s guitar leaving her speechless. Well-rounded after a decade of playing together their energy was infectious and exhilarating. The Boy Who Could Fly, Caraphernelia and finishing with the huge tune King For A Day, music certainly does make the world go around. As the last note echoed through the arena and the lights slowly brightened, a few thousand sated punters meandered on home, hearts full, because music is life.
The Gloom In The Corner
The Beautiful Monument
The Last Martyr
Review By Suze Blacketer
Adelaide has not been short of musical choice lately. This week, coming to us from The Gov, it was the incredible Meg Mac, touring her latest album ‘Matter of Time’.
Starting our evening Ayesha Madon delighted the crowd with her pop peppered songs. A quick Q&A with the crowd revealed that this was Ayesha’s first tour. Even more surprising was that her drummer is actually her brother-in-law, and they were playing together for the first time on this tour.
Starting with one of her earlier releases, Outside of the Party, she bopped around on the stage while engaging with the crowd. Sucked In saw her relax a bit more and Ayesha looked to relax more as the show went on.
Talking to us between songs, Ayesha was open in how her songs talk about mental health issues and how that is something that she is passionate about. Goldfish and Cloud played as those on the floor moved their bodies. Wanting to play a song that the crowd could get around and sing along to, we were treated to a cover of The Climb by Miley Cyrus. All those Hannah Montanna fans got around this one. Showing her prowess on the keyboard and the guitar, Ayesha Madon is someone to keep your eye on as she continues to produce great tunes.
Gratitude for the crowd that had come early to watch her set, Ayesha finished with Future Kinks.
Wall to wall people packed the venue as Meg Mac glided across the stage enshrouded in a sparkling cape. The opening notes of the title track of her album float across the room, the crowd cheering in anticipation. Meg Mac’s silky, emotional vocals wash over us, and the goosebumps begin. Following on with Turning bodies begin to sway and little pockets of space become the place to dance.
Meg greets the crowd and thanks them for coming, saying how she was sorry that she didn’t get to come here on her last tour. The crowd gave an audible sigh as Meg went on to say how it broke her heart to read the comments and thanked us for selling out this show. This album is a special one as is the tour. As Meg explained she took so long to make this album, writing a complete album only to throw it in the bin and go on to write Matter Of Time.
Something In The Water, which Meg tells us is one of her favourites off the album, is a beautiful powerful song and it is delivered as such. Every face was mesmerized, witnessing something magically spellbinding. Such meaningful and relatable lyrics. Give Me My Name Back and Meg tells a story about how they like to sit on the edge of the stage when singing this one but tonight they couldn’t as we wouldn’t see them! They tried stools but it felt like a Q&A session, so they stood. A beautiful moment at the end of this song was a sisterly hug that had the crowd smiling.
Don’t You Cry was one of my favourite moments from the evening, it is such a beautiful song. Moving on to the Like A Version songs that Meg has done, she tells the story of how she placed a poll on Instagram to see which one we wanted to hear. Sadly, someone booed her on the Sydney leg because they wanted Bridges and got Tame Impala’s Let It Happen which I think was an excellent choice!
Meg tells us how hard it is when you release new music as you need to say goodbye to some of the songs in your setlist and how she had put another poll on Instagram to see what people wanted to hear, surprised that Brooklyn Apartment was requested. She told the story of how she wrote this song while living in an apartment in Brooklyn that had paper thin walls, writing about the people who lived in the building.
Meg’s favourite part of the evening was playing the song Letter, telling us that she spent hours writing the letters to send to all the fans, everyone one of them kissed by her and the constant reapplying of lipstick to make it happen. She also told the story behind the song, of writing a letter to someone no longer in her life and it ended up becoming a song, and how she writes letters to strangers instead!
Known Better and Roll Up Your Sleeves finishing the evening with the clayton’s encore – Meg telling us she chickened out from leaving the stage in case we didn’t clap for her to come back so she just played them!
Meg Mac in a small intimate venue is a magical experience, sprinkled with stories and anecdotes about the songs. I know every audience member truly appreciated how special our evening was.